Friday, 28 September 2018

Snared By Your Words

Proverbs 6:2 You are snared by the words of your mouth; you are taken by the words of your mouth.

      Hafiz the Persian poet said, "The words you speak become the house you live in."
      I once heard a country and western singer say that he had been experiencing in his everyday life everything he and his band had been singing about. He said, "I don't know why it is, but everything I sing about lately has been happening to me. I have lost my wife, friends, and I'm broke, plus nothing seems to be going my way. I feel like everything I sing about is happening for real in my life." Prov. 23:7a For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
      I am happy to say that this singer did eventually become a man of faith in Christ and his life did turn around when he gave Jesus reign. One of the reasons his life turned around was that he started to say and live by what the Lord said was truth and reality concerning his life. Prov. 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
      You might say, "It can't be that simple - just change the way we talk and express ourselves and our lives will change with it." Yes, I truly believe this to be a reality if we follow up our talk with our actions. The Lord instructs the weak to say that they are strong. Joel 3:10b Let the weak say, I am strong. Why would God want us to keep saying we were strong when we did not feel that way? So that we would eventually become strong in God.
      God also admonishes us to say that we have been redeemed, delivered, and rescued from our enemy. Psalm 107:2 Let the redeemed of the LORD proclaim that he has redeemed them from the power of the foe. Why does God want us confessing His deliverance in our life? So that the truth of our God delivering us gets deep down within our spirit and we start to live a life believing in the willingness of God to help us and believing the love that God has for us.
      If all that is coming out of your mouth on a continual basis is filthiness, negativity, oppressiveness, and blasphemies then you will be snared by the words of your mouth. As you live out of this crass and vulgar existence, the fruit of that lifestyle choice will be your reward. You cannot expect a bounty of good, healthy, and lush results in a garden from planting moldy, diseased, and bad seeds. It does not work in nature and will not work in your life. James 3:11 Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? You will become snared by the words of your own mouth.
     We have to make a conscious choice to say and speak the words of life and words that give life. Psalm 91:2 I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust.” The psalmist makes a statement in this verse, "I will say of the Lord." I will use my mouth to say what God says about me. It is our choice to say what we say. 

      Therefore, we have to make a declaration that we will become a source of blessing by the way we speak and help untangle the snares we have created with our mouth. We want to talk and express what God says about us. His words toward us are words of peace and forgiveness, but we have to accept it as truth and declare it plainly.
      The choice is ours to make, We can speak blessing or cursing. What fruit do you want in your life? Deut. 30:19 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.

Friday, 21 September 2018

Bulldog Tenacity

Proverbs 24:16 Though a righteous person falls seven times, they will get up, but the wicked will stumble into ruin.

      "I cut this board three times and it is still too short!" The foolishness of this line is apparent, even though it is funny. Some people live their lives in the same manner of activity. They repeat the failure that is obvious to many over and over and complain that the result is the same. 

      They spend their grocery money on cigarettes, alcohol, and junk, and then complain there is no money for food, rent, and payments due. They hang out with abusive and dishonorable people and complain of unfaithful friends. They do the same things over again, claiming to be right in their actions. Prov. 12:15 Fools think their own way is right, but the wise listen to others.  
      You cannot defeat the devil you like to play with. You cannot beat the sin you enjoy participating in. Until you develop a bulldog tenacity and say "No" to the sin that so easily besets your life, you will remain captive to the mess you are in. 

      Until you pick up the weapons of God's grace and power with the mindset to use them, you will not be able to defeat the bondage holding you back. 2 Cor. 10:4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. 5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
      Yes, scripture says we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. It is true that God will give us the strength and ability to overcome every temptation that comes our way; however, we will have to step forward by faith and decide to be tenacious about going forward in righteousness. 

      We will have to yoke our heart to the Lord's and walk together and not contrary to each other. Matt. 11:30 For the yoke I will give you is easy, and the load I will put on you is light. The yoke may be easy and light, but it is a yoke nonetheless. It will take a bulldog tenacity to remain and walk with Christ through all of life for now and evermore. We cannot put God's grace and yoke on and take it off at the whim of our fickle feelings. This relationship with our Lord is permanent and eternal and not an on again and off again soap opera.
      Elijah was looking for someone to take his mantel and came across Elisha who had a bulldog tenacity. 1 Kings 19:19a So he departed from there and found Elisha the son of Shaphat, who was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen before him, and he was with the twelfth. Elisha plowed with twelve yokes of oxen. The amount of strength and will power it took to control such a large bullock team is understated in this scripture verse. The brute force and work it took for one man to control these big beasts of burden would have to take talent, patience, and tenacity to keep the row being plowed straight. 
      It is interesting the attitude and character that came out of Elisha when Elijah asked him what he wanted before Elijah was taken away. Elisha wanted a double portion of the anointing that was on Elijah. 2 Kings 2:9  After they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, “Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken away from you?” “Please, let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,” Elisha replied. 

      Elisha got what he asked for and I believe it was the bulldog tenacity of character that helped Elisha receive the promise. He was used to working hard and doing it right.
      A bulldog tenacity is something that is learned and acquired. You must exercise your faith day by day and pick yourself up with the Lord's help when you fall, fail, and mess up. Prov. 24:16 Though a righteous person falls seven times, they will get up, but the wicked will stumble into ruin. 

      Elisha had the right stuff because he wanted more of God on God's terms. God's heart is that none of us perish because of our own foolish ways, but He wants us to grow up and be tenaciously solid in His love and gift of eternal life through Jesus our Lord. Blessings.

Friday, 14 September 2018

Your Miracle Is My Miracle

Proverbs 16:9 In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.

      Your miracle is my miracle. My righteous success is your success. Your answered prayer is my answered prayer because it gives me hope. John 17:22 I have honored my followers in the same way you honored me, in order that they may be one with each other, just as we are one. 
      I was talking with a father whose young daughter had been in a motorcycle accident of significance. This blessed young lady had escaped the accident without major injury to life and limb. The joy in the father's heart was overwhelming when he shared the miracle his daughter and family had experienced. I realized at that moment that his miracle was also my miracle. It truly was a blessing to see his daughter standing there beside her father, still part of the family and in good health.
      This is the joy we have when we truly enter into the realm of God's kingdom through Christ. We have hope in the family of the Lord, because we are the family of the Lord. John 1:12 But to all who did receive Him, He gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in His name. 
      The miracle of the new birth in Christ is incredible when we realize that our salvation becomes everyone's miraculous blessings, because humanity now gets the men and women of God whom God intended them to be. It is no longer selfish individuals who were one of the many takers, predators, and liars who falsely presented themselves as self-made individuals. They have become God inspired saints. Psalm 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
      Miracles and blessings are happening to us on a continual basis and are manifesting around us every day. We just have to stop to see them plainly set before us as we take our next breath of God-given life. Psalm 19:1 The heavens proclaim the glory of God. The skies display his craftsmanship. 

      As we follow our plans and goals in life, we are often struck with the thoughts that we have done well so far in life. In fact, God was directing our footsteps. Prov. 16:9 In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps. When we grasp this reality, we will find it easier to rejoice with them who rejoice and enter into the joy of other people's success. As God directs those who have given their lives to Christ, their miracles become our miracles.
      Some may ask, "What about my individuality? Don't I lose my self-worth or identity if I become a common follower of some god?" Of some god - yes! However, of The God - no! The miracle throughout the universe that sustains life is the love of God. God's love and sacrifice Jesus gave us is the power of eternal life that love holds. God's love has no torment. Real love gives life and sustains it. However, we have to accept His love and walk in it to live out our life's purpose. Jer. 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope.  
      As I grow older and hopefully maturing in the gift of life the Lord gave me through Christ and the finished work of His cross, I find that truly other people's miracles are my miracles. I am blessed in heart when I see God working His miraculous love and abundance in my family, friends, and brothers and sisters in the Lord. 

      Look around and see the goodness of God. Yes, there is a lot of ugliness out there trying to block the view of miraculous events going on in plain sight. However, if you would just feel your own pulse rate and smile at the wonder of it, then it won't be long before you start seeing many other wonderful miracles going on in your life. 
      To be able to walk with God is truly a miracle not to be dismissed as common. No saints, the wonder of it is a blessing to behold. Isa. 46:4 I will be your God throughout your lifetime—until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you. This is our miracle. God bless you.

Friday, 7 September 2018

Even Faith Healers Die

Proverbs 14:27 The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, to depart from the snares of death. 

      1 Corinthians 15:26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
      I know this is going to come across as bothersome to North Americans, but we will all be inconvenienced with dying one day. This "I want it all" generation thinks they will be in control to the end; however, there is one who has the say as to the number of our days on this earth. Job 14:5 A man’s days are numbered. You know the number of his months. He cannot live longer than the time You have set. This is why we are admonished to live and enjoy the day we are in today. Psalm 118:24 This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. Enjoy your life today as it is the only one you have. 
      The only way out of death's grasp is through the Lord Jesus our Savior. As the proverb says - death is a snare, and that is what every person who has ever lived and is now living tries to escape from. Escaping the snare, grasp, or the inevitable clutches of death keeps people in fear of living truly free and assured lives. 
      We, on our own and of ourselves, cannot defeat this last enemy that mankind must face with our own cunning and bravado. It takes a supernatural God to get us through death's door and come through the other side complete in Christ and manifested into the fullness of our being. Psalm 48:14 For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.
      Jesus conquered death through His resurrection from the dead. Christ took the power of death's ability to corrupt and destroy the soul of man and gave every man who has received Jesus as Lord the same resurrection power that raised Jesus from the grave. 1 Cor. 15:55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? True, we will all physically die, but no longer in abject terror, as Jesus will be our guide unto and through death. 
      Yes, even faith healers will die but no longer dreading the corruption, decay and stinging death once reigned from. Jesus secured the keys of death and hell so we would not have to live through it. Rev. 1:18 I am the living one. I died, but look--I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave. 
      Even faith healers, ministers, and all the righteous in Christ do die but thank God Jesus has overcome death on our behalf. This is the good news that we will be with the Lord and death has no ownership on our souls. 2 Cor. 5:8 In fact, we are confident, and we would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord. 
      Someone might say that I may sound a bit morbid talking about death as if it was some kind of thing to look forward to. Not so. I am happy to be living a full and virtuous life and am able to do so because death has been defeated on my behalf. I can be at peace and do what the Lord has put on my heart because the fear of eternal death has no more reach into my existence.
      We have been bought and paid for in full by the blood of Christ and the finished work of the cross Jesus was nailed to. Our sins and judgment were nailed to the cross the day we accepted Jesus as Lord. I personally have no desire to go back and give myself over to the snares of death and all its tortures. 
      I look to the One who has given me all of His righteousness and grace and I feed my heart and life on that wonderful gift of God's love. When I die, it will be with and in the Lord my God. Death, the last enemy, has been defeated by my Lord and Savior. What an amazing love God has for us. 1 Cor. 15:26 The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.